Fiona Mayne became a Christian at the age of 40. Now, following God’s call, she has plans to leave her job as a Financial Adviser, sell her house and move to a new housing estate in Weston-Super-Mare to walk alongside the people she feels God is calling her towards.
I became a Christian at 40. It has changed every area of my life in the last five years since. It happened over dinner one evening.
As a single parent I’d been looking for a place to go on holiday and someone recommended a Christian hotel. I felt comfortable and safe there; they were nice people but I didn’t believe in God.
After a couple of years enjoying these holidays I found myself listening to people around the table discussing God and it suddenly all fell into place like a jigsaw. I said to them, “God’s real isn’t he?” They looked at me like was trying to be funny. But at that moment it clicked. That evening I sat down for dinner an atheist and stood up a Christian.
My life has been transformed. I used to be so materialistic; I had expensive jewellery, a personalised number plate, and designer clothes and handbags. I’ve since realised it is all meaningless.
Since becoming a Christian I have tried to follow God’s call. I have such a heart for a new residential area called Haywood Village in Weston-Super-Mare. I hope to sell my house in the near future which I have put on the market and move there so that I can be alongside the people I feel God is calling me to serve.
Haywood Village is nearing completion and the community is beginning to form. As a Community Pastor I’ve been leading the community engagement work there with the support of Locking Castle Church. Over the last two years we’ve developed strong connections with the local community and initiated a number of activities, including a weekly social group Take 5. The group is based on the blueprint of a similar initiative pioneered at West Wick.
Since September 2016, Take 5 has grown to 60 people attending with an average of 30 people at any one time. Through this initiative, we’ve built a strong relationship with the Headmaster at the local school and also the residents’ association.
Following the success of Take 5 it is planned to build on this and launch ‘Tea and Toast Church’ on Easter Sunday. This will be a monthly Sunday afternoon meet-up in the school hall, similar to messy church. We aim to gradually build this up to a weekly event to help provide a heart to the new community.
For me personally, I have been transformed by Jesus. I hope to be accepted to train as a Pioneer Minister in November at which time I plan to continue the work leading the church at Haywood Village whilst studying part time at Bible College.
“O Lord, you have searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar.”
Psalm 139: 1-2
Coming to a living relationship with Jesus is both a lifelong experience and a moment by moment encounter. Like the saying about the trendy young Christian who sat next to an elderly bishop and asked him, “Are you saved then, Bishop?” The bishop’s reply was, “One day, sometime ago, Jesus met me on the path I had chosen. He showed me his love as he died on the cross to save me and I decided to follow him. Each and every day he saves me from myself and shows me a better way to live. And when I die, I sincerely believe he will save me from Hell and I shall be with him in heaven.”
Clearly Fiona has experienced something of that “special moment encounter” with Jesus as she sat down an atheist and stood up a Christian. Praise God for such moments. But it doesn’t end there. As James says, “Faith without works is dead” and her encounter has given her the enthusiasm to live the story.
We first shared Fiona’s story as part of the Bishops’ Lent Appeal 2017